The Fighting Ground
|Genre||Children's historical fiction|
The Fighting Ground is a 1778 young adult historical fiction novel written by Edward Irving Wortis, under his pen name, Avi. The book is about a 13-year-old boy named Jonathan who runs away to fight in the American Revolutionary War. The novel covers two days, April 3 and 4, 1778.
The Fighting Ground won the 1984 Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction and was listed on the ALA's Notable Children's Books list. It was banned from elementary schools in Florida's Bay District Schools in 2008 for containing profanity.
A thirteen year old boy named Jonathan is eager to join the Revolutionary War that his family is at first very enthused about. His father used to help him train, but now after he returned from a battle with a wound in his leg, he is fearful and doesn’t want his son to leave. However when the war bell rings he leaves anyway. He burrows a tavern owner’s gun and takes to a morning long march to battle German Hessians. He ends up being taken prisoner. The Hessians take him to an old house where he finds a young boy in a shed and a dead mother and father in a field. It distresses him. All the while he isn’t sure if he trusts or mistrusts the Hessians, but he comes to appreciate them, at least. Together they bury the two parents. Then he escapes in the night back to the army camp. They force him to lead the way to the house and sneak back to the house to see if they are still awake. He runs into the house and wakes them and tells them to run, but they decide to fight instead and they use him as their hostage. He slips away, they all die, and he comes home just happy to be alive.
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- Williams, Nancy S. (2004). Using Literature to Support Skills and Critical Discussion for Struggling Readers: Grades 3-9. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Education. p. 30. ISBN 978-1-57886-096-8.
- "The Fighting Ground by Avi". HarperCollins. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
- Whelan, Debra Lau (June 16, 2008). "Florida School District Bans Avi Book". School Library Journal.
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